Citation Nr: 18132233
Decision Date: 09/06/18	Archive Date: 09/06/18

DOCKET NO. 15-40 370
DATE:	September 6, 2018
REMANDED
Entitlement to increased rating in excess of 30 percent for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is remanded.

REASONS FOR REMAND
This matter comes before the Board of Veterans’ Appeals (Board) on appeal from an April 2015 rating decision of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Regional Office (RO) in San Diego, California.
The Veteran’s most recent VA psychiatric examination was in April 2015, over three years ago.  The Veteran has specifically asserted that the symptoms associated with his PTSD have worsened.  See November 2017 Statement in Support of Claim.  This appeal is remanded to enable the scheduling of this examination in light of the assertion of increase in severity.
When the evidence indicates that a disability has worsened since the last VA examination, and the last examination is too remote to constitute a contemporaneous examination, a new examination is required.  See 38 U.S.C. § 5103A (d); 38 C.F.R. § 3.159(c)(4).  
Upon remand, the AOJ should also obtain updated VA treatment records.
The matters are REMANDED for the following action:
1. Obtain any outstanding VA treatment records.  
All reasonable attempts should be made to obtain such records.  If any records cannot be obtained after reasonable efforts have been made, issue a formal determination that such records do not exist or that further efforts to obtain such records would be futile, which should be documented in the claims file.  The Veteran must be notified of the attempts made and why further attempts would be futile, and allowed the opportunity to provide such records, as provided in 38 U.S.C. § 5103A (b)(2) and 38 C.F.R. § 3.159 (e).
 
2. After completing directive #1, arrange for the Veteran to undergo an updated VA psychiatric examination to evaluate the current severity of his service-connected PTSD. 

 
Nathaniel J. Doan
Veterans Law Judge
Board of Veterans’ Appeals
ATTORNEY FOR THE BOARD	Yonelle Moore Lee, Associate Counsel

For A Complete Guide To VA Disability Claims and to find out more about your potential VA disability case and how to obtain favorable VA Rating Decision! Visit: VA-Claims.org

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